Five principles for creating effective thought leadership

88% of B2B decision-makers surveyed by Edelman believe that great thought leadership can improve their opinion of an organisation. Powerful stuff.

Why then, do only 17% of B2B decision-makers rate the thought leadership content they digest today as very good or excellent? If only a measly 17% is considered effective, what are brands doing wrong with the rest? And what are they doing right? 

Earnest knows what it takes to close the gap between creation and effectiveness. Between quantity and quality. And here are the five principles we recommend for crafting effective thought leadership content, every time:

1. Get stakeholder buy-in

Our Client Services team always work closely with decision-makers to make sure everyone is on board, with our clarity of vision leaving no-one in the dark. 

When we worked with Instagram, we even held collaborative ‘idea sprints’ with their internal teams. 

2. Tap up subject matter experts

You only know what you know. We download the brains that matter, whether they’re experts in the boardroom, on the shop floor, or off the telly. 

For HR technology client Kronos, doing our homework with a collaborative study alongside Imperial College London paid off with a 450% increase in social followers. 

3. Listen in on the groundswell

Our strategists employ search data and research to find the questions resonating with audiences – and then arm salespeople with the answers. 

Did you know that content created without customers is 27% less likely to get good results? Fact. 

4. Pick the right packaging

We consider all kinds of formats to land what you want to say in the most impactful way to your target audience.

It might be a podcast for the commute (like the award-winning one we made with Mastercard), an animation for a coffee break, or a leisurely long-read via Amazon Alexa. 

5. Find your voice

Our Content Team has years of experience writing for B2B brands big and small, capturing what you want to say, whatever the word count. 

And, did you spot what these five principles have in common? They’re all focused on connecting different sets of people with the right ideas, at the right time. 

Stakeholders. Subject matter experts. Strategists. Sales people. Personas. Content writers. You and your business. 

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(Header photo: Pavel Nekoranec on Unsplash)

Effective B2B thought leadership can’t be created by one person or ‘thought leader’ in complete isolation. It takes collaboration, commitment and time from people working together and listening to each other. 

Are you ready to start connecting the dots and winning over your stakeholders, teams and customers?  

Find out what we can bring to your next thought leadership project here

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(Header photo: Pavel Nekoranec on Unsplash)